Maddow's Color Confusion

Over at The Maddow Blog on MSNBC, Rachel Maddow's team took note of my recent American Thinker article on population growth and conservatism -- particularly the following statement I made regarding an electoral map of the 2012 election:

Of course, Republican victories are more correctly highlighted in freedom blue on this figure, with Democrat wins in commie red (rather than Tim Russert's backwards red state-blue state nonsense).

In reply, Kent Jones made the following statement at MSNBC:

So, in Rayne's world, since it's from Tim Russert, and it's from MSNBC, the dreaded liberal Kracken, the red state-blue state meme is 'nonsense' and should be scuppered. Got it. (Although this switcheroo could prove awkward for the folks at Red State.). As for 'commie red,' well, sure, red is the color of communism,  but it's also the color of the Confederate battle flag.

Leaving aside the obvious problem with Jones's analogy, since the Confederate battle flag has a substantial amount of blue on it, apparently MSNBC is attempting to argue that the Confederacy was the side of freedom during the Civil War.  If not, then Jones's own example proves my point and undercuts his reasoning.  And if so, then Jones is engaging in some significant historical revisionism and/or demonstrating that liberals value absurd property rights (i.e., slavery) over basic human rights (i.e., freedom).

The Confederacy was not the side of freedom.  The Union, led by Lincoln (a republican), was the side of freedom.  Thus, consistent with my argument, red is not the general color of freedom.

Jones is correct on one point: the backwards Republican red state-versus-Democrat blue state nonsense is probably here to stay.  Once again, conservatives were sloppy and let the liberals define an important part of the political sphere.  We see this time and time again, unfortunately.  Rather than jumping on the red-state bandwagon back in 2000, conservatives should have fought for the blue-state designation.

Blue is generally regarded worldwide as the color of conservatives, while the radical left adopts red.  One only need look at the red national flags of the former Soviet Union, as well as communist China and Vietnam, to get the point.  Compare that to the colors of the major national conservative parties in Australia, Canada, Finland, France, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Mexico, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, the United Kingdom, Uruguay, and others, which are all blue.

The Republican Party chose poorly with its current red logo.  Shown below is the GOP logo, along with the national flags of communist China (center) and the former Soviet Union (right).

Republican strategists, being funded in large part by corporations, should know that branding is important, and it matters.  Brands aren't developed simply as make-work projects for brand experts -- they make a difference.

So who chose a red logo with stars?  Dumb that decision was.  We also see a red flag with stars on the communist flags of the USSR, China, Vietnam, and others.  Indeed, if one didn't know better, the current Democratic Party logo looks more conservative -- when compared to the international conventions -- than that of the GOP.

At the end of the day, it's policies that matter most, but red is most certainly not the color of conservatism.

Dr. Sierra Rayne writes regularly on environment, energy, and national security topics.  He can be found on Twitter at @rayne_sierra.

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